With the San Diego Comic-Con now running like clockwork as one of the biggest gatherings for comics, movies, and any other vaguely nerdy pop-culture ephemera in the world, it's hard to believe that it's largely the work of one man.
Shel Dorf, a comic book collector who moved from Detroit to San Diego, put together the first con back in 1970, which was attended by 300 people. The most recent SDCC, this past August, was attended by 125,000+ people, with next year only promising more.
Dorf, who died on Tuesday, stopped running the convention after 1984, complaining that it had been taken over by Hollywood and other media pursuits when originally it really was just about appreciatiating comics, their creators, and their collectors. While Dorf's fanaticism for the medium's fandom dropped off a bit later in his life, he is fondly remembered for the recognition he brought the art form during the long years before it reached widespread acceptance.
SDCC has posted a remembrance from R.C. Harvey, Comics Journal columnist and longtime friend of Dorf, here. Posted 11.06.09 by reelz